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Tuesday Bird Droppings: Where pitchers and catchers report today

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Baseball-related things are happening! It’s about time.

MLB: Spring Training-Boston Red Sox at Baltimore Orioles Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

Good morning, Camden Chatters.

Pitchers and catchers report. Some say those are the four greatest words in the English language.

I wouldn’t go that far. I can think of better, like, “Free bagels for life” or “Here’s a million dollars!”

Still, for a baseball fan, it’s a momentous day. After a long and frustratingly dull offseason, actual baseball players are reporting to actual baseball fields to start engaging in actual baseball activities. We can practically hear the crack of the bat, smell the hot dogs, feel the breeze on our skin on a warm day. The 2019 baseball season is no longer a vague, abstract fantasy. It’s actually about to happen, folks.

I mean, not immediately. Because let’s be honest, not much really happens today. Pitchers and catchers report to Sarasota, yes, but then they just sort of mill around, say hello to their teammates, put some stuff in their lockers. They don’t even officially work out until tomorrow. We’re still 11 days away from exhibition baseball, and more than six weeks away from baseball games that count.

Still...actual baseball players. Actual baseball fields. Actual baseball activities. I’ll take that any day over the alternative.

Links

Q&A: Orioles general manager Mike Elias upbeat on the future but knows there’s a lot of work to do – The Athletic
Dan Connolly has a must-read interview with Mike Elias that discusses the Orioles’ international scouting efforts, Brady Anderson’s role in the organization, the upcoming draft, and the state of the organization in general. Elias sums it up best by saying, “We need to do a lot of work.”

Orioles sign Eric Young Jr. - School of Roch
The Orioles added another warm body to camp with Eric Young Jr., and Roch Kubatko speculates that it’s possible for Young to win a starting outfield spot. That a 33-year-old with a lifetime .643 OPS could even be considered for a starting role speaks volumes about the lack of talent on the team right now.

O's Opening Day roster prediction - Orioles.com
Joe Trezza gives his best early guess at the Orioles’ Opening Day roster. I can quibble with some of his picks — like snubbing #teampaul by leaving Paul Fry out of the bullpen — but for the most part it looks about right. It’s not a strong roster, folks.

With a forgettable roster that will gradually be overhauled, the Orioles’ expectations are lower than ever – The Athletic
Then again, maybe we shouldn’t get too caught up in who will be on the Opening Day roster. As Matt Kremnitzer points out, that roster will be constantly changing over time, hopefully for the better.

A look at Frank Robinson’s most memorable games as an Oriole - BaltimoreBaseball.com
In honor of Frank Robinson, I attempted to whittle down his 10 greatest games as an Oriole, from the ‘66 Series to hitting the ball clean out of Memorial Stadium. What say you, folks? Any games I left out?

Orioles birthdays

Is today your birthday? Happy birthday! You have five Orioles birthday buddies, including 1978-79 closer Don “Full Pack” Stanhouse (68), so nicknamed because his nervewracking save opportunities caused Earl Weaver to plow through a full pack of cigarettes. Stanhouse briefly returned to the Orioles in 1982 to finish his career.

Other O’s birthdays include Chris Snyder (38) and Adam Stern (39), who combined for 11 games with the Birds, and 1957-60 right-hander Jerry Walker (80). And today would have been the 77th birthday of righty Pat Dobson, who was one of the Orioles’ four 20-game winners in 1971. Dobson died in 2006 at age 64.